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thelovegoose

MMO Classes / design methods / Design Forum scope

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Do we really need more threads about MMO classes or do we need things like accounts from long-time aspiring/skilled game designers no matter whether you agree with their material? Sandman, don't be pressured by the obnoxious , you're this forum's moderator so its up to you which threads should be closed. Too long a post, and spelling mistakes are not grounds to close a post, and although just having a rant isn't appropriate for a game design forum - his thread wasn't a rant, it was (opinionated) advice/ observations. You don't become game design moderator on a forum, even if it is on whats basically a programming site, unless you are a game designer of sorts at heart. If thats the case I don't see why you would want to deny someone to express the frustration shared by many games designers at trying to ply their trade in an industry that doesn't know what a good games designer is. Apologies to my team-mates if youre embarrassed by my rant here, but I don't think this kind of thing should be acceptable on a key game development website!
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Original post by Pirate_Lord The Industry Method There are many different ways to design a game. The computer game industry settled into their way of designing games many years ago. The method they settled on was known to real game and simulation designers long before the computer game industry ever even existed. The method they settled on is known as “design by committee”. The ironic (or is it pathetic…) thing about this is that the phrase “design by committee” held a very specific meaning among professional game and simulation designers long before the computer game industry even existed. The phrase “design by committee” famously translates as “the worst possible way to make a game”. This is the method that the computer game industry has chosen to institutionalize. And they wonder why game design seems so “risky” for them? -- Marc Michalik (A.K.A. Pirate_Lord) Lost Art Studios – www.piratedawn.com
Our team is designing our game by committee. We're yet to see for sure whether a design by committee approach can produce a coherent and high quality game. Its success is dependent on several things. First is the type of game - a story for instance is a very personal thing and therefore a story oriented game is going to suffer with more than one author unless those authors are very in tune with each other. (Examples of that working though are "dumb and dumber", "the office"). Non story games are much easier to design by committee because its easier to look at the components in isolation, and its easier to get an impression of the final game at an earlier stage. Second is the people in the committee - if they are negotiable, open to comprimise, intelligent, have similar tastes and good communicators then the task is much easier for reasons that don't need explaining. Third, you need one person to make decisions on things that can't be agreed on. Finally, I need to challenge the fact that not just everybody can design games. Everybody who plays games has something they can contribute to a games' design - I think your attitude is wrong in thinking that only someone who has been designing games for a long time should be involved in the design (albeit youre putting this is in a model where there is only one designer). Programmers and artists have particularly useful insights into how the design will be implemented which gives them different ideas to a pure games designer. Also, just because you do it for a living, or have been doing it a long time doesn't mean you have more natural talent than someone who doesn't. Like you point out - the industry (except a few organisations) have no clue what a good games designer is. [Edited by - Kylotan on January 31, 2008 12:02:07 PM]

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Original post by thelovegoose
Do we really need more threads about MMO classes or do we need things like accounts from long-time aspiring/skilled game designers no matter whether you agree with their material?


Trust me, I would be happy to see fewer of the former and more of the latter.

Quote:
Sandman, don't be pressured by the obnoxious , you're this forum's moderator so its up to you which threads should be closed. Too long a post, and spelling mistakes are not grounds to close a post, and although just having a rant isn't appropriate for a game design forum - his thread wasn't a rant, it was (opinionated) advice/ observations.


For future reference, if you have an issue with a moderation decision, the preferred procedure on this forum is to PM the relevant moderator first, and if that doesn't satisfy you, contact one of the staff.

Pirate_Lord's first thread was closed because it had degenerated almost entirely into flames. Every thread he made since then - including the one you are referring to - has been little more than a continuation of that first one thread, despite being asked several times not to do so.

For that reason I completely agree with mittens' decision to close the thread.

Quote:

You don't become game design moderator on a forum, even if it is on whats basically a programming site, unless you are a game designer of sorts at heart. If thats the case I don't see why you would want to deny someone to express the frustration shared by many games designers at trying to ply their trade in an industry that doesn't know what a good games designer is.


Expressing frustration with a view to getting helpful advice, or to give helpful advice is one thing. Expressing frustration for the sake of it is basically ranting, and that's the territory into which Pirate_Lord's thread falls. He clearly is not interested in getting helpful advice, because he's already been given much and he's ignored it. Any advice he is trying to give is buried under so much bitterness it's almost impossible to recognize it.

I'll allow this thread to stay open, but please keep the discussion to different approaches to managing game design within a team, (ie. the second part of the original post) rather than about the decision to close Pirate_Lord's thread. If you wish to discuss the latter further, please PM me.

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Original post by thelovegoose
If thats the case I don't see why you would want to deny someone to express the frustration shared by many games designers at trying to ply their trade in an industry that doesn't know what a good games designer is.


Because:

a) This is not the place for venting frustrations at the industry. What purpose does it serve? We're not employing people here. How is one person complaining about their personal experience going to benefit the rest of us on this forum?
b) Why assert that the industry doesn't know what a good designer is? It's such a vague and subjective assertion that it completely diminishes any possible value that such a rant on the issue may have.

The Game Design forum is for discussing the finer details of Game Design, not for people to complain that the 'industry' doesn't accommodate them, especially not in the form of long-winded opinion pieces. They can post it on a blog and link to that if they like, but it's not appropriate to use GDNet's forums as a place to pour out all your personal opinions.

And even if it was possible to easily determine how games 'should' be made, there are necessarily compromises to be made when working for real money, often invested by someone else who has their own agenda, to produce not just a game but a product, to be marketed to consumers, in retail outlets both real and virtual, within predetermined timescales, by a team often limited by education, location, and real-life concerns. I hate many of the restrictions myself, and would like to think about ways to change them, but ranting at length is not the way forward, especially not here.

PS. I also edited the thread title to be a little less misleading.

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